Review: Audio Concepts Force Subwoofer
The Force is the new subwoofer from Audio Concepts Inc., makers of the absolutely killer Titan II LE subwoofer. The Force is based on the Titan’s design but within a much smaller enclosure: it is a compact 13 ½” tall, 16 ¾” wide, 13” deep and weighs 48 pounds. As with all ACI speakers it can be ordered in a variety of beautiful custom wood finishes. I paid $849 plus shipping ($35) for the maple finish. It has a stated frequency response of 20-250 Hz, +- 3db with a system Q of less than 0.6. Detailed specs may be found at http://www.audioc.com.
I used the line-level inputs on the Force to hook it up to a Musical Fidelity A300 integrated amp using the amp’s pre-amp output. The main speakers are ACI Sapphire III LE, the digital front-end a Rega Planet 2000 – a modest but immensely satisfying system. Interconnects are DH Labs BL1 Series II, speaker cables are DH Labs Q10 in an internal bi-wire configuration.
The following impressions are based on a burn-in period of approximately 50 hours.
According to the ACI web-site, the Force is identical to the Titan III LE except it has 3db less output. My experience with the Force is completely consistent with that claim. This is one incredible sub. The Sapphires are terrific speakers in their own right, but augmenting the low-end response with the Force has enhanced the sonic palette to such an extent, that for the first time in years I am not thinking about my next upgrade. While acoustic bass is beautifully defined and organic, the real revelation was with rock – the bass guitar is now a distinct and very integral part of the recording – the sub clarifies the bass lines so vividly, its as if John Paul Jones, Geddy Lee, Victor Wooten and the rest are suddenly back in my room after an extended break! I am listening to rock albums far more now than I have in a long, long time. There is no overhang, absolutely no bloat - just clean, punchy, effortless bass. I have optimized the sub’s settings for music, so I will not comment on its performance on movies, except to mention that at a higher output setting this sub shakes foundations with the best of them. In my mind, this is an unqualified Best Buy!
Rega Planet 2000 CD Player
Musical Fidelity A300 Integrated Amp
ACI Sapphire III LE speakers
DH Labs BL1-II Interconnects
DH Labs Q-10 speaker cables
ACI Titan II LE
Sunfire True Sub